Arsla leads Control Risks’ analysis of political, operational and security risks in Afghanistan and Pakistan, based in Control Risks’ Middle East hub in Dubai. She contributes daily updates to Control Risks’ online risk monitoring platform and provides bespoke political risk consulting and threat assessments to clients across sectors. Arsla works closely with Control Risks’ security consultants in Pakistan to deliver market entry assessments and analyses of political developments as well as security, corruption and market-exit risks.
Before joining Control Risks, Arsla served as a senior political officer for the British High Commission in Islamabad, where she led counter-extremism and counterterrorism policy and research. She has worked with the UN Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate on violent extremism and security issues, particularly in Iraq and Syria. She has conducted research in Iraq’s Kurdistan Region to assess youth vulnerability to militancy. Arsla worked with the US Institute of Peace, the Council on Foreign Relations and the International Peace Institute, providing political and security analysis on Afghanistan and Pakistan. Her analysis and research have appeared in Foreign Policy, The Financial Times, The Guardian, AlJazeera and the Journal of Peacebuilding and Development. She has also appeared on BBC World, CNBC, Sky News and Bloomberg to comment on political and security developments in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Arsla graduated with a master’s degree in international affairs with a focus on international security from Columbia University and a bachelor’s degree in international relations from Boston University. She has worked and lived in the US and Pakistan and speaks Urdu